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Properties by the sea are becoming more attractive as city dwellers are looking to escape high prices, stress and pollution. Half of residents of urban areas have been looking for properties by the coast, says Zoopla’s research.

Londoners seem to be drawn to Margate which has undergone a revamp in the past couple years with property prices increasing by 37% in the last three years.

The point for investors? More than half of tenants living by the waterside would be happy to pay 10 to 25% more for a water view, say Strutt & Parker.

While over-45 year olds relish the calming effect of living near water, with 41% of over 45s wanting to live near water for that reason, millennial Londoners making the best of being priced out of the city will hopefully introduce Margate’s thieving gulls to the delights of avocado toast.

Further north, a little game of musical chairs is taking place, with Mancunians buying at the mouth of the river Mersey near Liverpool and Liverpudlians in turn moving to Skegness on the east coast which not only boasts lovely sea views but also a famous jolly sailor statue.

While sea views and jolly sailors all all fine and dandy, what about the commute? Do people give up their jobs when they move? Something all three places have in common is a high percentage, up to more than half in the case of Skegness, of people working from home or no fixed place. For those who do commute, these commuter flow graphs show what is happening:

Wallasay at the mouth of River Mersey (left): The majority commutes to Birkenhead or works from home, while some stragglers head to Liverpool to no doubt pick up jobs the Liverpudlians left when moving to sell sea shells by the sea shore (right).

Margate’s commuting chart looks a little different: while again many workers set up shop in their living room, many commute to local hub Canterbury, one of the neighbouring coastal towns. Only a handful travel all the way back to London for work.

Now why do we care? If you are a landlord, understanding your tenants and their commute helps you invest in the right places to attract the best tenants.
Ex-Londoner, working from home? Superfast broadband. Over 55s couple? Sea views. Commuting to a neighbouring town? Parking space.

DataShine ONS and census data visualised by Oliver O’Brien at UCL CASA

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